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Silicon Beach Report Aug. 14: Snapchat Gives Creators AR Power

Snapchat enlists Nicki Minaj to show how AR tools let users shop in RL; SpaceX invites guests into the Dragon X; Treyarch testing Battle Royale mode.

Snapchat Gives Creators AR Power

Starting with hip-hop mogul Nicki Minaj, Snap Inc.’s Snapchat will allow creators to use augmented reality lenses to promote their shoppable products. Minaj’s Snapchat features a shop function that allows users to interact with and tap to buy a necklace supporting her new “Queen” album, Digiday reports. The shoppable feature will be expanded to other users soon and it appears it’s Snapchat’s latest push to reel in creators who drive Snapchat’s user base, which shrunk by three million this quarter.

SpaceX Discloses Dragon Details

For the first time, astronauts and reporters were welcomed into Space Exploration Technologies Corp.’s Dragon X capsule which will carry the company’s first crewed mission to space on behalf of NASA. ArsTechnica reports that SpaceX founder Elon Musk has missed his goal to have a crewed flight in space by 2016, but the company’s timeline is still ahead of its competitor, The Boeing Co. Four astronauts have been flying to SpaceX’s Hawthorne location on a weekly basis to train in the company’s capsule simulator and prepare for the launch, which estimated to take place in December 2019.

Treyarch Testing Call of Duty Royale

Treyarch, the Santa Monica-headquartered subsidiary of Activision Blizzard Inc. confirmed to VentureBeat Aug. 14 that the prerelease beta test of a Battle Royale player mode for its popular Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 video game will be released Sept. 10 on PlayStation 4. Battle Royale is a common method of play involving either solo or team players in first-person shooter games and has been popularized by Riot Games Inc.’s Fortnite and Tencent Games’ PlayerUnknown Battlegrounds.

Tech reporter Samson Amore can be reached at samore@labusinessjournal.com or (323) 556-8335. Follow him on Twitter @samsonamore.


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